Topics on Assessment Tools

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Assessment tools can either refer to career tests for individuals or assessment and testing services for HR professionals for use in the hiring process. These tests often map various psychometric data points along and against specific skills and competencies required for the job.

Career assessment tools exist to help people examine their own set of personality traits and determine how those traits affect their compatibility with various career paths and workplace environments. These tools are often used by employers to determine how to best fit an employee into the workforce or how to best capture an individual's talent within a department. The tools take a variety of forms, each with a different focus. The form chosen by a given employer relies on that organization's individual criteria it feels are necessary to work successfully within its culture and environment.

Some assessments focus only on directly determinable factors such as key personality characteristics and real skills, while others measure more qualitative attributes, such as career goals and workplace preferences. Each assessment varies in the specific personality characteristics it measures, but common attributes include an applicant's interests, values and abilities. Whatever the focus, the goal of the assessment is to ascertain the individual talents, skills and motivations of each applicant.

Discovering these attributes and identifying individual strengths and weaknesses help employers better place their employees to optimize production capacity and reduce costs. The better an employee understands his or her preferences in a career, the less likely a career change will be necessary and the more likely an employee will stay in one position, given the opportunity to continue to grow professionally. However, there are some related drawbacks to the assessment process.

Career assessment tools may not give accurate information, and so may not adequately address the real career needs of an individual. Additionally, many of the most useful tools require the oversight of professional interpreters to guarantee the validity of the results and to apply the results in the most useful way.
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